, Volume 17, Issue 1, pp 41-68

Higher education co-operation and Western dominance of knowledge creation and flows in Third World countries

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This paper outlines the Western models of university development with its accompanying Eurocentric knowledge systems adopted by Third World countries. It discusses the various productive and counterproductive effects of these alien features to Third World universities, their research institutions and the knowledge output of their academic communities. It goes on to discuss the possible contributions that can be made within the ambit of South-South educational interchange for the development of a self-reliant higher education system among Third World nation states accompanied by an interdependent and more equitable world knowledge order. The final part of the paper examines the prospect of a self-reliant higher education and knowledge-generation system, developing in Third World countries, in the light of rapidly growing information technology which is dividing the world into “information-rich” and “information-poor” countries.

This article is a revised and expanded version of a paper presented by the author at the 20th Annual Conference of the British Comparative and International Education Society held at the University of Hull in September 1985. The author acknowledges the critical comments and useful suggestions offered by S. Gopinathan, S.N.R. Kazmi and Peter Worsley on earlier drafts.